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We have some WoTC news and some Zendikar spoiler tidbits that blog reader 'Marvel' gave me a heads up for you today - first off, let's see recent developments at the WoTC.

If you, the MTG fan, spends any time online (which we're certain you do), you will know of the Wizards of the Coast forums / boards previously known as 'Gleemax'. Furthermore, if you were a member, you would have felt a sense of loss, like a large black hole threatening to envelope your world when Wizards took the boards down for about a week or so.

Well, its back up and you can now log onto your account HERE. Now a few notes about some changes on the Wizards boards . . .

Boards are now fully equipped with headers such as Featured (content), People, Blogs, Photos, Videos, Groups, Forums, Chat and a Wiki. Wow - that is quite the expansion over the previous Gleemax setup. It is somewhat akin to FaceBook light and although we're certain some with be dissenting towards change, we here at MTG Realm choose to embrace it. Just expect some growing pains as any bugs gets worked out.

We are rather excited about the new blog / profile features. We created something of a test group 'Magic the Gathering in Ontario' to hook Magic players in Ontario (London, Toronto, Kingston, Ottawa, or anywhere in Ontario) to local Friday Night Magic, Tournaments, and Pre-Release / Release events.

The actual forums themselves had witnessed very little change and all your favourite Magic the Gathering banter is still here. Personally, we here at MTG Realm almost exclusively hang out in the Future Set Speculation sub-forum.

Now, if you are wondering just where the hell your WoTC forum signature picture / image went, do not jump off the bridge just yet. You will likely have to load it up again. Now finding exactly where to do this is not very intuitive at all. Here are the steps to getting up your cool forum sig pic again . . .
  1. In any Forum thread, go to the top left corner and find 'Preferences',
  2. Now Click on that and scroll down to the signature box, and
  3. Drop in your awesome html sig pic here.
lF you suck at html like I do, let Google be your friend and find the code you need. You will need a banner image around 400 to 700 pixels wide and 100 to 3oo pixels tall. Upload this image under your profile gallery and then use appropriate html code (such as < src =" http://">) to have your image / signature line appear at the bottom of your posts.

One last thingy about some rumours you may have heard about the forums not being under direct care and control of Wizards of the Coast. Essentially - yes, it's true. new forums are NOT controlled by WotC but instead a company in Oklahoma City, OK. The site in question is ONEsite Inc. (the folks who own ONEsite, and WebHero) and yes indeed, these folks are large and in charge when you head over to the Wizards Community page).

Just before you phreak out, here is what Michelle Brunes of WoTC has to say "this We do partner with ONEsite Inc. to build and host this platform. You can review our full privacy statement here. We at MTG Realm are happy that Wizards of the Coast is focusing on the gaming business and not spending time babysitting the social networking side of things.

Now onto some fun stuff . . .

MaRo just dropped some very nice juicy Zendikar tid-bits on WoTC today - here is the skinny . . .

* A card that is a two-card kill combo with a rare card in Magic 2010.
* A spell capable of making a 14/1 token.
* A creature that can sacrifice itself to make a planeswalker go to the graveyard.
* A legendary octopus
* A spell that can allow you for no mana to put a creature from your library into play.
* A card with the reminder text "The land continues to burn..."
* A card that allows you to pay eight mana for four 4/4 fliers
* A creature whose rules text includes the phrase "you win the game."
* A cycle of cards that players have been begging us to print for years.

In addition, here are a few card names from the set:

* Electropotence
* Grappling Hook
* Journey to Nowhere
* Lotus Cobra
* Sphinx of Lost Truths
* Vampire's Bite

Stay tuned for more Zendikar spoiler goodness . . .


Zendikar Slow Cooker 2

Hey y'all, like the name on the post suggests (slow cooker), we have a bunch of Zendikar slow spoilers in various stages of undress . . . let's get to 'em . . .

First off, we now have the full Sorin Markov Planeswalker card, and it was not quite what we expected here at MTG Realm.

Sorin Markov, 3
Planeswalker - Sorin, Mythic Rare
+2 Sorin Markov deals 2 damage to target creature or player and you gain 2 life.
-3 Target Opponent's life total becomes 10.
-7 You control target player's next turn.

We really thought that the second ability would have held something quite different but we are still quite OK with it.

Next up, his excellency Evan Erwin over at the Magic Show released part two of Warren Instigator and so far, this card seems incredible.

Warren Instigator,
Creature - Goblin Beserker, Mythic Rare
Doubble Strike, ??

There is still a LOT of space left on the text portion to fill with kick-butt abilities. We personally are hoping for this dude to have haste. We're also hoping for some serious Landfall mechanic love here - hasty tokens please !

Next up is part two of Vampire Nighthawk from the very mobile Trick over at ManaNation. (Memo to Trick - vlogging and driving is an inherently dangerous activity - please be careful) :-)

Vampire Nighthawk, 1
Creature - Vampire Shaman, Uncommon

A flying dude with flying AND deathtouch (for 3)?! - Yes please - I don't really care if this guy is a 1/1 - this card not only equates to potential hits to your opponent's face but also provides removal.

Enfin, un ange légendaire mythique à partir de Magic Ville . . . check it out !

Iona, Shield of Emeria 6
Legendary Creature - Angel, Mythic Rare

Voici ce que je n'espère . . .6/6 vol, vigilance, à chaque fois qu'un terrain arrive en jeu sous votre contrôle les créatures blanches que vous contrôlez gagnent +1/+1 et la protection contre le noir jusqu'à la fin du tour - perhaps too much to ask for maybe (?)


Also - some interesting pieces of information from Star City goon Jeff Phillips who had kidnapped and interogated WoTC staffer Mark Purvis recently at GenCon Indy 2009.

* “In Zendikar, the land is dangerous and unpredictable.”
* “The people of Zendikar are all well-equipped."
* “Zendikar is the home world of the Kor. All previous appearances by them, they were abducted against their will.”
* The large, floating polyhedron-shaped objects are “hedrons, which are the remnants of an ancient civilization. Their purpose is unknown to the current inhabitants of Zendikar.”
* “Vampires are also native to Zendikar. They have a feel very reminiscent of Native Americans, with war paints and a very tribal feel.”
Sorin is not native to Zendikar.
* “Elves and Goblins are native to Zendikar, but they have an altered behavior. It’s a fresh twist.”
* “Rocktraps: they appear to be rocks, but are actually creatures.”
* “Lands are definitely atypical.”
* “Gravity is a bit off”
* "flying is a major sub theme"

Stay tuned for more MTG spoiler goodness . . .


Zendikar Release Promos

Big news from Digga on the forums . .

This art appears on the pre-release / launch party poster with Rampaging Baloths. Unfortunately, we have only partial text on the one card.

The safe / unobscured card we already know from a previous post . . .

Rampaging Baloths, 4
Creature - Beast, Mythic Rare
Landfall - Whenever a land enters the battlefield under your control, you may put a 4/4 green Beast creature token (onto the battlefield)

And the new card . . .

Valakut, the Molten Pinacle
Land, Rare
Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle enters the battlefield tapped.
Whenever a Mountain enters the battlefield under your control, as long as you control 5 other Mountains, Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle deals 3 damage to target creature or player.
: Add to your mana pool.

EDIT : This post was updated only 15 minutes with full card information - the following was speculation previously posted (so disregard eh.)

We can deliberate some assumptions for Valakut :

* Valakut is not a common. As it is safe to assume that Valakut is the Release / Launch promo card, it will be either a rare or a mythic rare.

* We may also assume the following card text given the partial wording . . . "Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle enters the battlefield tapped."

* There is a conditional line starting with "W", and we think it safe to say that the word here is 'When'.

* The 'When' is not likely to be associated with a 'kicker' cost as this would be another line above the conditional.

* T: Add R (or RR?) to your mana pool. Valakut obviously produces red mana '
' given the standard mountain card frame.

Some Valakut Speculation . . .

'When Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle enters the battlefield, acrifice it unless you return a land you control to its owner's hand.'

'When Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle enters the battlefield, you may search your library for a Plains card and put it onto the battlefield tapped. If you do, shuffle your library.'

'When Valakut, the Molten Pinnacle becomes tapped, it deals 1 damage to target creature or opponent'.

> Pipe in and provide a speculation in the comment thingy below !


Zendikar Style

In some late-breaking news, we now have mana cost and loyalty from the MTG FaceBook page for the new Chandra Planeswalker in Zendikar . . .

Chandra Ablaze, 4
Planeswalker - Chandra, MR
? : ?
? : ?
? : ?
Loyalty : 5


Also of note is uncanny resemblance of the anticipated Zendikar environment to the upcomming film 'Avatar' due out in December, 2009. (side-note : this film looks epic and I need to see it!) Anywhoos, from some of the Avatar stills found on the internets, it almost looks like director James Cameron had a look at the 'Zendikar Style Guide' and 'A Planeswalker's Guide to Zendikar'.


Also - catching up on some trademark actions by Wizards of the Coast to see what we can expect on the long ranger radar . . .

On August 13, 2009 a filing for DUEL DECKS : PHYREXIA VS. THE COALITION

On August 20, 2009, filings for Mirrodin Pure, Scars of Mirrodin, and New Phyrexia.

Le site de l'United States Patent and Trademark Office montre que la marque Duel Deck: Phyrexia vs. The Coalition a été déposée par Wizards of the Coast, nous indiquant le thème d'une prochaine extension qui fera suite - Other such products include Duel Decks: Elves vs. Goblins, Duel Decks: Jace vs. Chandra, Duel Decks: Divine vs Demonic et Duel Decks: Garruk vs. Liliana. Wizards of the Coast vient de déposer à l'United States Patent and Trademark Office trois nouvelles marques : Mirrodin Pure, Scars of Mirrodin et New Phyrexia.

Some background on Mirrodin and Phyrexia . . .

Far from Dominaria, in a distant corner of the Multiverse, lies Mirrodin, a plane made entirely of metal. Blades of golden grass in the Razor Fields chime in the wind. Huge misshapen boulders are magnetically suspended above the peaks of rusted iron mountains. Elsewhere, a wide sea of silvery liquid reflects the sky like a rippled mirror. On the horizon, four suns rise and set in strange orbits: white, blue, red, and a black sphere of void. It is here that Magic finds a unique story.

Phyrexia is an artificial plane of entirely mechanical "life" created by an ancient planeswalker. Little is known of this planeswalker, aside from the fact that he preferred to assume the form of a dragon. This world was not so different from Mirrodin until Yawgmoth arrived, brought there by the planeswalker Dyfed. Yawgmoth, with the remnants and descendants of the phthisis-inflicted Thran humans whom he "saved" through the process he referred to as "Phyresis" (essentially the replacement of weak mortality with artifice) came here when they were forced out of the Thran Empire as traitors. The ensuing war destroyed the nation of the Thran.

Sorin and Planechase

Good Day my peeps,
today, we have a look at the latest slow cooked results for Sorin, Zendikar Planeswalker, as well as catch up with some Planechase news.

Here, the latest from WoTC. If I had any mtg contest prizes, I would offer it to the one reader who comes most close to the second ability, but alas I do not so you will have to settle for the notoriety instead.

Sorin Markov, 3
Planeswalker - Sorin

+2 : Sorin Markov deals 2 damage to target creature or player and you gain 2 life.
? :
-7 : You control target player's next turn
Loyalty : 4

If I had to guess . . .
-3 : You draw two cards and target opponent discards 2 cards.


And now the skinny on the new Planechase game, today we have a look at what to expect if you pick up the Strike Force box.

The "Strike Force" deck enlists creatures with haste and double strike for quick attacks that are sure to leave a nasty mark. Planeswalk to the Academy at Tolaria West to refill your hand, and then use burn spells to finish off your opponents

Academy at Tolaria West
Plane - Dominaria
At the beginning of the end step, if you have no cards in hand, draw 7 cards.
: Whenever you roll , discard your hand.

Plane -Ravnica
Whenever a white creature is put into the graveyard from the battlefield, return it to the battlefield under its owner's control at the beginning of the next end step.
Whenever a nonwhite creature is put into the graveyard from the battlefield, return it to its owner's hand at the beginning of the next end step.
: Whenever you roll , creatures can't attack you until a player planeswalks.

Glimmervoid Basin
Plane - Mirrodin
Whenever a player casts an instant or sorcery spell with a single target, he or she copies that spell for each other spell, permanent, card not on the battlefield, and/or player the spell could target. Each copy targets a different one of them.
: Whenever you roll , choose target creature. Each player except that creature's controller puts a token onto the battlefield that's a copy of that creature.

Izzet Steam Maze
Plane - Ravnica
Whenever a player casts an instant or sorcery spell, that player copies it. The player may choose new targets for the copy.
: Whenever you roll , instant and sorcery spells you cast this turn cost 3 less to cast.

Naar Isle
Plane - Wildfire
At the beginning of your upkeep, put a flame counter on Naar Isle, then Naar Isle deals damage to you equal to the number of flame counters on it.
: Whenever you roll , Naar Isle deals 3 damage to target player.

Plane - Dominaria
Instant and sorcery cards in graveyards have flashback. The flashback cost is equal to the cards mana cost. (Its owner may cast the card from his or her graveyard for its mana cost. Then he or she exiles it.)
: Whenever you roll , take an extra turn after this one.

Plane - Dominaria
All creatures have " : This creature gets +1/+0 until end of turn."
: Whenever you roll , put a 5/5 red Dragon creature token with flying onto the battlefield.

Plane - Kaldheim
Players play with the top card of their libraries revealed.
Spells that share a card type with the top card of a library can't be cast.
: Whenever you roll , target player loses life equal to the number of card in his or her hand

Plane - Kamigawa
All creatures get +1/+1 and have haste.
: Whenever you roll , untap all creatures that attacked this turn. After this main phase there is an additional combat phase followed by an additional main phase.

Stronghold Furnace
Plane - Rath
Whenever a source would deal damage, it deals double that damage.
: Whenever you roll , deal 1 damage to target creature or player.

Art is just . . . awesome !